Glad to have the record corrected, let the public know that Stuart likes Coldplay.

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Sep 2·edited Sep 2

Really enjoying the show! I emailed you about a recent study on breastfeeding, but it looks like it didn't reach you...

Fitzsimons & Vera-Hernández (2022). Breastfeeding and Child Development


It uses an IV approach to estimate a causal effect; the description of the IV is:

> [The study] exploits the authors’ novel observation that, in the UK, the timing of birth affects breastfeeding for low educated mothers. In particular, amongst this group of mothers, breastfeeding rates are lower for those who give birth just before or early into the weekend compared to those who give birth at any other time during the week. We argue that this is because the provision of infant feeding support in UK hospitals is lower at weekends than during the week. Without early hands-on support at the hospital, it is much more difficult for successful breastfeeding to be established. At the same time, we provide extensive evidence that maternal and birth-related characteristics do not vary by timing of birth, and nor do a range of other hospital maternity services vary by timing of birth. Timing of delivery therefore provides a credible source of exogenous variation that we use as an instrumental variable for breastfeeding.

Using that IV they find "large effects of breastfeeding on children's cognitive development but no effects on health or noncognitive development during the period of childhood we consider."

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